Minister Logar attending NATO Foreign Ministers’ Coronavirus Response Meeting
Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Anže Logar attended the regular meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers today. Due to the changed circumstances following the spread of the COVID-19 disease, NATO Foreign Ministers met via a secure video conference, for the first time in the history of NATO, with the COVID-19 crisis at the top of the agenda. They assessed further measures NATO and the allies can take to enhance the collective fight against the virus.
The allies continue to stand together and support each other in the pandemic, firmly committed to their fundamental mission – collective defence and preservation of peace and security. They stand firmly in unity and solidarity to provide assistance and support national efforts during the COVID-19 crisis.
Ministers also touched on other key challenges affecting the stability of the Euro‑Atlantic area, as well as the possibilities to upgrade efforts for combating terrorism. They took decisions to step up NATO’s training mission in Iraq, and discussed how to strengthen NATO’s partnerships across the Middle East and North Africa. They later discussed other challenges facing the Euro‑Atlantic region and the need for better coordination regarding arms control, disarmament, and non-proliferation.
Minister Logar commended the organisation of the meeting, which sent a strong message of unity and stability of the Alliance out to the world. He also welcomed North Macedonia, which attended the meeting as full NATO member for the first time. The continued open door policy sends a clear positive signal to Western Balkan countries and the wider Euro-Atlantic region. According to Minister Logar, the current crisis requires coordinated action and solidarity and highlights the need to strengthen both resilience and partnerships, also with the EU as NATO’s key strategic partner.
The Minister went on to underline the importance of a persisting fight against terrorism and welcomed the recently concluded peace agreement between the Taliban and the Afghan government, hoping that it would result in dialogue led by the Afghan government.
Slovenia also supports the Alliance’s further engagement in the Middle East and North Africa. As stated by the Slovenian Foreign Minister, NATO needs to follow the path of increased engagement and respond to new challenges and threats, also as a result of a reflection process to further strengthen its political dimension, which was initiated by ministers during the meeting. They adopted a joint statement highlighting the importance of solidarity and mutual assistance, of continuity in performing NATO’s key missions, and the need for transparency, which is essential in responding to both the pandemic and to disinformation.